Monday, 2 March 2009

Year 13 Film : Lara Croft - Feminist Icon or object of desire for the Male Gaze? Today's Debate.

Some notes on Tomb Raider:

"Lara Croft" may seem like an empowering role model for some women because of the way she triumphs in an apparently male-dominated world. However, Lara merely comes across as an object designed to inspire male fantasy as demonstrated by her clothing, demeanor, and relationships, all of which beckon for attention from a predominantly male audience.
Lara's haughty behavior and demeanor not only broadcast the false message that a woman needs to be improper to succeed, but are also used in a way to shamelessly draw male attention.
Lara doesn't have any men in her life at first gives the impression that she is a strong, independent woman. Though, she is actually quite dependent on her father, while the absence of a male by her side invites the male viewer to occupy that empty space in his imagination.

"Thus, male clothing becomes synonymous with victory over males, and Lara ostensibly becomes a symbol of female empowerment as one who transcends the overwhelming obstacles set forth by a male dominated society - all with the aid of her attire. In actuality, however, Lara's victory-by-apparel suggests that if a woman is to succeed in a male dominated world, she must wear a man's clothes, which ultimately disassociates her with her feminine identity, despite the feminine features her clothing may accentuate. Instead of signaling empowerment, Lara's clothes acknowledge that one must possess male traits in order to excel in an openly male-dominated world."

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